No medical exemptions have been offered to tennis players intending to compete in the Australian Open, according to tournament director Craig Tiley, who also repeated that everyone at Melbourne Park would need to be fully immunised.
Novak Djokovic’s inclusion on the Australian Open entry list on Wednesday, according to Tiley, meant nothing about his Covid-19 immunisation status, which the world No. 1 has refused to reveal, claiming privacy concerns.
Tiley told the ABC, “To be clear upfront, no one can play the Australian Open unless they are vaccinated.”
“The only way you could compete, other than being vaccinated, is if you received a medically granted exemption from Australian authorities.”
“This morning, I saw reports. There have been no medical exclusions granted up to this moment.”
Djokovic’s presence on the entry list, Tiley added, had no bearing on whether he would be in Melbourne from January 17 to 30, chasing his 10th Australian Open title and a record 21st men’s Grand Slam singles title.
Tiley explained, “Everyone goes on the entrance list.” “It is not a list of who has agreed to participate in the draw. That will happen in a few weeks when the Australian Open’s official list and draw are finalised.”
Serena Williams was not on the roster because she had elected not to play based on medical advice, while Roger Federer was not on the list because he is currently recovering from a series of knee surgery.
Last week, Djokovic stated that he would make a decision “very soon” on whether or not to fly to Australia.
Srdjan Djokovic, Djokovic’s father, claimed last month that Djokovic was unlikely to play and that the vaccination requirement was “blackmail.”
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